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Slamdance Film Festival stays true to independent spirit

The Slamdance Film Festival usually takes place in Park City alongside the much larger Sundance Film Festival. Slamdance organizers on Thursday said the event in 2021 will be held in California and online amid the continued spread of the novel coronavirus. Peter Baxter, festival president and co-founder, says the changes aren’t about compromise but rather “community, accessibility and growth.”
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SLAMDANCE FILM FESTIVAL

Dates: Friday, Jan. 18, to Thursday, Jan. 25 Box office and screenings: Treasure Mountain Inn, 255 Main St., Park City Hours: 9:30 a.m. daily through 15 minutes after the final screening starts. Tickets: 
Feature films: $14 Shorts blocks: $10 Polytechnic programs & DIG: Free Closing night party: pass holders only
Will Call: Online orders must be picked up in person (with a valid ID) at the festival box office during operating hours. Please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to showtime. Any tickets not picked up at the start of the screening will be forfeited. For more information, visit Slamdance's website For a complete schedule, go here.

“Born out of rejection, Slamdance’s artist-led group continues to discover cutting-edge talent creating work outside of convention,” said Slamdance co-founder and President, Peter Baxter. “Our 2018 competition lineup is daring, varied, and vivid — it represents the spirit of our time and leads us into the future.”

All films were selected from blind submissions by a team of Slamdance alumni and are programmed democratically. Jury and Audience Awards are presented for the Best Narrative Feature and Best Documentary Feature.  

“This year’s special screenings at Slamdance are not about movie stars, big-name filmmakers or hot trending topics. They share the common theme of humanity —highlighting issues of disability, mental health, the resonance of friendship and the extraordinary resilience of human beings,” said Paul Rachman, Slamdance co-conspirator and special screenings programmer.



“From the extraordinary power of one man’s determination to prove himself in Lisa France’s ‘Roll With Me’ to the reliance and trust we put in the animals and pets we share the earth within Dana Nachman’s ‘The Pick of the Litter,’ where dogs learn to lead the blind into a more fulfilling life. The message is clear — we are all here to help each other.”

Additionally, a major new Festival award has been launched. Alumni Anthony and Joe Russo (“Welcome To Collinwood,” “Captain America: Civil War”) have partnered with Slamdance to further develop the mission of the artist-led organization with their inaugural Russo Fellowship award. The award winner will receive a $25,000 cash prize and mentorship from Joe and Anthony in the development of the winner’s next project at the brothers’ new Los Angeles-based studio. Every participating filmmaker at the 2018 festival is eligible for this prize. The award will be presented annually to a new recipient at the Slamdance Film Festival.



“The Russo brothers exemplify our ‘by filmmakers for filmmakers’ paradigm,” said Baxter. They are joined by a great number of dedicated alumni who’ve shown when it comes to recognizing talent and launching careers, Slamdance’s independent and grassroots film community really can do it themselves.”

Established in 1995, Slamdance is dedicated to discovering and supporting new talents in independent filmmaking. In addition to the Russo Brothers, notable Slamdance alumni include: Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk,” “Interstellar”), Oren Peli (“Paranormal Activity”), Bong Joon Ho (“Snowpiercer”), Lena Dunham (“Girls”), Azazel Jacobs (“The Lovers”), and Benh Zeitlin (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”).

In November 2015, Slamdance announced DIG (Digital, Interactive & Gaming), a new digital, interactive and gaming showcase dedicated to emerging independent artists working in hybrid, immersive and developing forms of digital media art.


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